The mission of the Games for Entertainment and Learning (GEL) Lab at Michigan State University is to design innovative prototypes, techniques, and complete games for entertainment and learning and to advance state of the art knowledge about social and individual effects of digital games. The GEL Lab is an association of game research and design faculty and students, primarily in the College of Communication Arts and Sciences. The lab focuses on externally funded research and development work and employs graduate and undergraduate students.
The Games for Entertainment and Learning (GEL) Lab at Michigan State University was established in 2005 with the mission to design innovative prototypes, techniques, and complete games for entertainment and learning and to advance state of the art knowledge about social and individual effects of digital games.
The game research and design faculty and students in the GEL Lab have established Michigan State University as a site for important research on “games and meaningful play”. The GEL Lab has created and researched over 22 games with funding from the National Science Foundation, NASA, the National Institute of Health, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Ford Motor Company Fund, and more. GEL faculty has produced games that appear in industry events, such as the Independent Games Festival and academic juried events, such as the Foundation of Digital Games, Meaningful Play, and DIGRA, and are active scholars typically publishing their work in peer-reviewed journals and edited book chapters.
The GEL Lab is physically located in the College of Communications Arts & Sciences at Michigan State University. The lab contains a collection of high-end game development workstations, game and virtual reality hardware, and game development software.
The GEL Lab is part of a larger GameDev@MSU effort that involves research, outreach, and teaching. The undergraduate program in game design was ranked #8 in North America in 2016 by the Princeton Review and have produced over 300 student-project games since 2005.